Bulova 1940 Military Non-Issue

Submitted by Hagbard on September 8, 2012 - 9:59am
Manufacture Year
Movement Model
Movement Jewels
Movement Serial No.
Case Serial No.
Case shape
Crystal Details
Approx 28mm Acrylic
Additional Information

Case looks to be plated brass, no markings on case back or dial other than 'Bulova'.  Strongly resembles some of the military models aleady in the database, but has quite a different dial, and no caseback markings suggesting it's not an issued model.

Watch runs, and keeps good time.  Movement does not hack.

The caseback doesn't seem to want to come off, despite my best attempts.  if removal is necessary for identification then I shall persevere further.

edit: I've had to guess the manufacture year, as I can't save the watch without one.  I have no idea whether my guess is anywhere near true though.

Bulova non issue military watch
1940 Bulova watch
Posted October 13, 2012 - 2:20pm

I don't agree. There are many watches in the DB with no or incorrect dates. This watch is a good example of a known model, the unissued or issued but supplied with a new case back type A-11, and there are probably people out there with similar watches, and with the info in this thread it would help them identify it as such, or at least give them a good idea of the model. Removing historically important watches like this simply because of a lack of an exact date would be a little like throwing the baby out with the bathwater!

EDIT:- Not the Type A-11, but ORD DEPT.

Reverend Rob
Posted October 13, 2012 - 12:21pm

If I am not mistaken, Bulova patented and produced their own case openers for these. I thought I had one somewhere, but it has been swallowed up in some drawer. I often see these damaged by use of incorrect case openers, like the Jaxa. 

Longines made similar case openers, quite likely for the same reason- Military contract cases. Although they turn up on the 'Bay from time to time, I'm seeing none at the moment. I've had success carefully clamping two opposing caseback sides in a tiny bench vise, and rotating the upper case. 

Posted October 13, 2012 - 2:49pm

A-11? not even close, the Military A-11 was center Seconds.

Not issue or non issued.

The Watch is 'NON-CONFORMING' as the Dial is incorrect for Bulova Military issue.

Posted October 13, 2012 - 3:07pm

Do you read posts before remarking on them? I edited it before your post. If you read back over this thread, ideas were put forward about the dial, and if you look closely, or even zoom in a little, you can see just above the 10, just below the 3 and the 6, remains of white paint, maybe from where someone tried cleaning the dial, or just decay, as the sub-dial also has some paint missing. In every other visible way, this is an ORD DEPT watch, apart from the case back. Much to similar to deny, even for you Mark.


Posted October 14, 2012 - 12:52pm

Not so similar. Look at the lack of double circles around the outer trak.

Has any one considered that this may be a front loader with a strange case back that looks like it screws off? Just a thought.

Unknown at this time.

Posted October 14, 2012 - 1:06pm

JP, did you read the first part of the post? It gives a possible reason for the missing lines. And it looks like a standard military case to me, but maybe the owner can confirm if it is a front loader.

Posted October 31, 2012 - 1:53pm

In reply to by bobbee


You're going to School Me on Military issue Watches now?

issue Dial above, 3rd showing in this thread.

1. There is a section of the 6 numeral showing below the sub seconds chapter of the subject which does not appear on the 10 AK ORD DEPT Military issued wristwatch.

2 The Numerals showing are incorrect, they are not Military standard.

3. The Case dimensions are suspect for a Military issue Bulova Case.

with all due respect,


Posted October 31, 2012 - 2:24pm

In reply to by FifthAvenueRes…

 I agree, you are correct about the dial,non-con.

And, with all due respect, I wouldn't dream of schooling You on military watches as You know more than me about them,  I know less than nothing.

Posted October 14, 2012 - 1:19pm

It certainly doesn't appear to be front loading - there's nothing that indicates that the back will screw off anyway.

Personally, I think the Ord Dept diagnosis is a good one; everything I read about the Ord Dept watches matches exactly with mine, other than the missing rings on the dial.  I suspect that these have been removed either by age, or by overzealous cleaning in the past.  There's certainly enough flecks of paint to indicate the former.

Anyone in the UK want to have a go at getting the back off for me? 

Posted October 14, 2012 - 4:02pm

I would if I could get the right tool, you would be better off trying the jewelers.